February 14, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - Senate Democrats said Thursday that they were united in opposing Republican efforts to weaken the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and told President Obama they supported the renomination of Richard Cordray to head the agency. "It is time to confirm Richard Cordray as CFPB director to give the American people the protections they deserve and the marketplace the certainty it needs to help strengthen our economic recovery," Senate Banking Committee Chairman Tim Johnson (D-S.D.)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 7, 2013 |
At least eight California school districts have misappropriated millions of dollars in funding intended to pay for meals for low-income students - the biggest culprit being the Los Angeles Unified School District, according to a state Senate watchdog group. The California Department of Education has ordered districts to repay more than $170 million in misused funds to their student meal programs, the California Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes said in a report issued Wednesday.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 7, 2013 |
A consumer advocacy group Wednesday called for new laws to improve the state's monitoring of doctors who prescribe dangerous narcotics. Consumer Watchdog said reforms were needed to reduce surging prescription drug overdoses and to rein in incompetent and corrupt physicians. "We call upon you to convene hearings immediately to deal with this crisis and consider appropriate solutions," the Santa Monica-based group wrote in a letter to Gov. Jerry Brown and lawmakers. The letter was prompted by Times reports that exposed the role of physicians' prescriptions in overdose deaths.
January 29, 2013 |
Two of Congress' top watchdogs have asked the Justice Department to explain its prosecution of Aaron Swartz, a popular hacktivist who committed suicide Jan. 11. Swartz, 26, was facing the possibility of years in prison for downloading millions of academic articles from a pricey scholarly database, JSTOR, via the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's network. JSTOR declined to press charges, but U.S. attorneys went ahead with a prosecution anyway. After the cofounder of the social news site Reddit died, his family and girlfriend said the U.S. attorney's office in Boston had "hounded" Swartz to his death.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2013 |
The internal watchdog at the troubled Los Angeles Fire Department is again squaring off with City Atty. Carmen Trutanich over access to personnel records. On Wednesday, Independent Assessor Stephen Miller said he had filed a State Bar complaint against some of Trutanich's attorneys for their roles in withholding records. He also announced that he has filed a claim against Trutanich for alleged misconduct. The charges come as the Fire Department faces scrutiny over the accuracy and transparency of its response times and as Trutanich fights a tough reelection campaign against a former state lawmaker and City Council member who is trying to unseat him in the March primary.
December 7, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - The head of the United Nations nuclear watchdog agency acknowledged Thursday that inspectors had made no progress in a yearlong effort to determine whether Iran had conducted research needed to build an atomic bomb. Inspectors from the International Atomic Energy Agency are expected to meet Iranian officials in Tehran next week to seek a resumption of their inquiry on the possible military dimensions of Iran's nuclear program. "We have intensified our dialogue with Iran this year, but no concrete results have been made yet," Yukiya Amano, head of the IAEA, told the nonpartisan Council on Foreign Relations.
November 29, 2012 |
LONDON - Britain should set up an independent regulator to monitor its freewheeling news media and prevent abuses such as the phone-hacking scandal that exposed unethical and sometimes illegal news-gathering practices, a senior judge said Thursday after a yearlong investigation. The new regulating body should be established by law and exclude politicians and editors to guarantee its independence from government and industry pressure, Lord Justice Brian Leveson said in a much-anticipated report that blasted the aggressive tactics often associated with British tabloids and paparazzi.
November 20, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - House Republican leaders and a watchdog group have asked the Environmental Protection Agency to respond to allegations that Administrator Lisa P. Jackson has been using a secret private email account to do official business, purportedly to shield correspondence from the reach of the Freedom of Information Act. On Tuesday, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, a nonpartisan good-government group, sent a letter to...
November 16, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Iran has finished installing centrifuges at a fortified underground facility and can sharply increase production of enriched uranium to a purity that can be quickly improved to weapons grade, the United Nations nuclear watchdog agency said Friday in a report likely to stir new concern in the West about Tehran's nuclear ambitions. According to the report by the International Atomic Energy Agency, Iran has prepared 700 more centrifuges at the Fordow facility for operation since August, doubling the plant's enrichment capacity.
October 30, 2012 |
SEATTLE - Seattle has been several steps behind Los Angeles in implementing long-discussed police reforms, and now the Pacific Northwest city is hiring away one of two key monitors overseeing the Los Angeles Sheriff's Department, Merrick Bobb. A federal judge in Seattle on Tuesday approved Bobb's appointment as special monitor under a settlement between the city and the U.S. Justice Department, which investigated a number of controversial beatings and shootings and concluded last December that the department had engaged in a pattern of excessive force.